McDermid’s fiendishly clever eighth novel featuring forensic psychologist Tony Hill and detective Carol Jordan (after The Retribution) finds the two partners on the outs. Jordan has resigned from the Bradfield, England, police force and taken up a labor-intensive DIY job. Hill is still struggling with the events that have driven Jordan from his life. Meanwhile, Det. Sgt. Paula McIntyre, who formerly served with Jordan, catches two cases—one involving a missing person, the other a vicious murder—that together engulf her both personally and professionally. A psychopath is intent on kidnapping and training the perfect wife—and beating to death and disfiguring his “mistakes.” When McIntyre’s decision to seek help from Hill takes a drastic, unexpected turn, she’s forced to turn to the reclusive Jordan instead. The villain may be a mere foil, but the ingenious way in which he tests the mettle of Hill and Jordan is not to be missed by fans of the unusual sleuthing duo.